In yet another example of rampant sexual misconduct and harassment in our nation's armed forces, the Navy has reportedly relieved Capt. Gregory McWherter of command while it investigates a complaint that he tolerated and even encouraged a hostile work environment.
McWherter's reassignment was announced last Friday, though few details were given as to why other than he was the subject of "ongoing investigation into recent allegations of misconduct and an inappropriate command climate" while he was the commander of the Blue Angels.
Today, however, the Washington Post obtained internal documents saying:
A former member of the Blue Angels filed a complaint last month accusing McWherter of promoting a hostile work environment and tolerating sexual harassment. The complaint described an atmosphere rife with sexually explicit speech, the open display of pornography and jokes about sexual orientation.
Just how did the Post come across these documents? A FOIA, perhaps, or a well-placed source? Nope! A Navy official accidentally emailed them to an editor. Oops!
While the Navy did not respond to the Post's request for comment, it did subsequently release more information about the accusations, including "lewd speech, inappropriate comments, and sexually explicit humor were allowed in the workplace and in some case encouraged by the commanding officer. It was further alleged that pornographic images were displayed in the workplace and shared in electronic communications."
The Navy recently removed 151 sailors from positions of trust, including as sexual assault counselors. Sens. Gillibrand and McCaskill have fought to reform how the military handles sexual assaults with varying degrees of success.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.